The “Commitment Model” of Clinical Ethics Consultation: Revisiting the Meaning of Expertise and Professionalization

Maria Cristina Murano, Milena Maglio, Nicolas Foureur, and Marta Spranzi


While in Europe the debate over clinical ethics consultants’ expertise and professionalization is ongoing, in France it remains rather marginal. In this article, we illustrate how the “commitment model” adopted by the Clinical Ethics Center of the Greater Paris University Hospitals situates itself in such a debate. We first present the commitment model by drawing upon an emblematic case of consultation, and then describe, in turn, its understandings of democratic expertise and of the professionalization of clinical ethics consultation. Accordingly, the commitment model advocates against individual consultants’ certification, but it does not rule out the need for training nor a certain form of professionalization of clinical ethics consultation services.


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